Etienne Decroux

cover of etienne decroux In developing Corporeal Mime, Decroux constructed a new actor, akin to Craig’s ubermarionette, by reimagining, recontextualizing, rethinking and defamiliarizing the body. He broke the body into new units, and gave it a different way of meaning. Barthes reminds us, “our society takes the greatest pains to conjure away the coding of the narrative situation” as “bourgeois society and the mass culture issuing from it demand signs which do not look like signs” (Barthes 1977: 116). Decroux’s newly minted body purposely looked like a sign, a highly and visibly articulated one. Decroux wanted the sign to look like a sign so much that he said one had to perform as if slapping the audience to keep them awake.
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